Monday Feb 06, 201205:24 AM GMT
Qatar urges 'serious dialogue' with Iran
Qatari Foreign Minister Khalid Mohamed al-Attiyah
Sun Feb 5, 2012 5:26PM
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An attack is not a solution; and tightening the embargo on Iran will make the scenario worse. I believe we should have dialogue."

Qatar's Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Khalid Mohamed al-Attiyah

Qatar has urged the West not to launch an attack on Iran over its nuclear program, stressing that the Iranian nuclear dispute should be settled through dialogue and negotiations.


Speaking at the 48th Munich Security Conference in Germany on Sunday, Qatar's Foreign Minister Khalid Mohamed al-Attiyah said a military strike against Iran would be disastrous for the region, Reuters reported.

"[An attack] is not a solution; and tightening the embargo on Iran will make the scenario worse. I believe we should have dialogue."

“I believe that with our allies and friend in the West we should open a serious dialogue with the Iranians to get out of this dilemma. This is what we feel in our region,” al-Attiyah pointed out.

This comes as The Washington Post quoted US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta in an article as having said that “ there is a strong likelihood that Israel will strike Iran in April, May or June - before Iran enters what Israelis described as a 'zone of immunity' to commence building a nuclear bomb."

Israeli Deputy Prime Minister Moshe Ya’alon threatened Iran with a military strike against its nuclear facilities in an attempt to force the country to abandon its peaceful nuclear energy program.

Meanwhile, British Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg on February 2 expressed concern that the US and Israel would “take matters into their own hands and launch a military strike against Iran.”

Despite the widely publicized claims by the US, Israel and some of their European allies that Iran's nuclear program may include a military aspect, Iran insists on its civilian nature, arguing that as a signatory to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and a member of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), it has the right to develop and acquire nuclear technology for peaceful purposes.

This is while the Israeli regime is widely known to possess over 300 nuclear warheads. Furthermore, Tel Aviv refuses to allow its nuclear facilities to come under international regulatory inspectors and rejects any international nuclear regulatory agreements.

The IAEA has conducted numerous inspections of Iran's nuclear facilities but has never found any evidence indicating that Tehran's civilian nuclear program has diverted towards nuclear weapons production.

MP/HGH/IS
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